494 images of Germany just before World War I - part 4

Friday, May 06, 2016

During the early 1900s a French journalist named Jules Huret spent a number of years in Germany, and published two books in 1912 and 1913 based on his reports sent back to Le Figaro. The way he described being in the country is so riveting that you almost feel as if you are there with him, seeing Germany as it was during the very last moments of Europe's long period of peace. As the book is in French I translated one third of Huret's books and published it on Lulu Press, and hope to do the remainder when I have the opportunity.

What also makes the books interesting however is the large number of photographs, very rare for a book this old. The two have some 500 photographs in total, and are all captioned. I have gathered them together here and translated the captions, sometimes haphazardly because it really is a *lot* of content.

If you can read French you can read the original books here, and here.

This is the last of four parts. To start over again, see here.

Königsberg is an area with important commerce and lively navigation. The ships with large tonnage however have to unload their cargo at Paillau, because the Pregel is not deep enough.
Königsberg. -- The Steindammertor numbers among the 17 large towers and the massive gates spread around the city.
Danzig. -- The Krahntor is a picturesque port that was transformed in 1444. Its bizarre silhouette is located in front of the ports that belonged to the Hanseatic League.
In Bavaria. -- The Castle of Neuschwanstein, one of the numerous castles of the king of Bavaria, was built in 1869 by Louis II. On the top of Hohenschwangau, it rises 200 metres over the plain.
Munich. -- Caroline Square. In Munich your eye is pleased by perfect distribution of the streets, avenues, the roundabouts and squares.
Munich. -- The Grocery Market. -- The people of Munich eat as well as they drink, and the markets of the city always have roast meats, suckling pig, sausages and all types of cold cuts.
Munich. -- The Tomb of Emperor Louis VI of the Bavarians, in the church of Notre-Dame, is a mausoleum of marble guarded on its sides by bronze knights, kneeling to the ground, holding lances with the names of the Emperor inscribed. On the sides are the statues of Albert V and Wilhelm IV, Bavarian dukes.
Munich. -- The Basilica or Saint-Boniface Church is a construction made in the style of old Italian basilicas of the 5th and 6th century.
Munich. -- The Propylaea. -- At each crossroads you see this transplanted architecture: obelisks, Greek temples, arcs of triumph, Florentine palaces, Byzantine basilicas, Baroque churches and Rococo chapels.
Munich. -- The Old Pinakothek . -- Munichers are especially proud of their old Pinakothek (art gallery), where all the schools of painting are represented, except the French one which is not worthy to be there.
Munich. -- The funeral of Prince Regent Leopold.
Munich. -- The Palace of Justice shows a certain particularity in that its architect (F. von Thiersch) adopted the Baroque style for the eastern part and the Gothic style for the rest.
Munich. -- The Artists' House, built on the plans made by Seidl, furnished and decorated according to the ideas of the great painter Franz von Lenbach.
Munich. -- The new city house, of a copious but a bit cluttered Gothic style, made Munich's artists wail. But once the touch of time has finished the work, nothing will distinguish it from the old city halls you see everywhere.
Munich. -- The Festival room of the Hofbraühaus has the feeling of a cloister with its pointed arches and walls covered with pale frescoes. But it's a place to drink, laugh, talk loudly, and it's where you can get in touch with Munich's real beer drinkers.
Munich. -- The New Pinakothek looks like the refuge for the State's acquisitions. Still, it has some nice canvas paintings from the Munich school.
The castle of Nymphenburg is Bavaria's Versailles, a very mediocre Versailles teeming with rock gardens, garlands, arabesques, ornaments, and silver mythological figures.
Munich. -- The coronation of Bavaria's King Louis III. -- In the gala carriage stopped before the Rathaus, the new sovereigns receive the homage of the civil authorities in the presence of an enthusiastec crowd that has gathered from all corners of Bavaria.
King Louis III of Bavaria by his serious character and good heart has a very large popularity that has contributed in no small part to the elevation of the regent to the throne.
Hops in Bavaria. Top: Harvesting hops. Middle: a poor friar with hops to bring to the brewers. Bottom: children participating in the harvest.
The carnival in Munich goes from 6 January to Ash Wednesday. At this time Bavaria goes crazy. It's a continual intoxication and delerium impossible to describe in detail.
The carnival in Munich. -- During this time the students never open their books, never set foot in the University, and spend everything they have (and everything they don't have).
Beer is the queen of Munich. It's what a great number of workers make a living from, and what refreshes everybody there. For a Municher, drinking beer -- from Munich -- is the height of earthly pleasures.
Easter cakes representing caricatures are popular. These ones show a peasant girl bringing potatoes for dinner, a Swabian peasant, a servant girl from Munich, and a horseman.
A procession by horse. -- Bavaria is one of the German countries where Catholics are greater in number, with 4 million Catholics. The religious ceremonies there have a very particular public character. Here in the village of Kötzing it is tradition to make a procession on horseback.
Mountain Bavarians are tall, strong, cheerful, versed in all the arts. They wear short grey vestes and pants leaving the knees exposed and wear small green felt hats.
Bavarian children. -- The little boys wear Tyrolian garb and felt apple-green hats; the girls wear indian red and wear the same felt hats.
Gathering in the countryside. -- On Sunday countryfolk sing and accompany it with popular musical instruments, have fun and chat in the open air.
National dance of the mountain Bavarians. -- The stands are set up where they pass their Sundays dancing, thus giving picturesque entertainment to the tourists.
Munich. -- Public telephones are installed on the streets where the public can, at an average of 10 pfennigs, immediately communicate without having to go and park at the nearest post office.
The lead game, popular at Christmas Eve, consists in placing molten lead in cold water and taking the form that emerges as a forecast for the new year.
Cultivating radishes in Bavaria. -- Watering is done with special pumps where the movement of the water is done by a sort of seesaw that two women manipulate.
At the Munich fairgrounds, fryers sell fried fish displayed in a bizarre fashion, being skewered on sticks stuck in the ground.
Munich's mechanical clock, restored a few years ago, shows an alternation as the hours pass of tournament knights, heralds with their mace and plumed hats, two cheerful robber jesters and trumpet players.
Old Munich. -- It still exists here and there, for the most part in the quarters of Schwabing and Au, with these wooden houses with external lofts, which once gave the city the appearance of a poor yet picturesque city.
Ironworks -- This forged iron transom offers a sobriety of pattern and lightness of lines that one is hardly used to finding in ornaments made by German hand.
Left: A modern house in Munich where the exterior decoration is at the very least a strange one. Right: The house entrances in a portico form have the advantage of bringing the garden and the house closer together.
A pewter Maß (tankard). Munich art strives to bring about about a variety of material employed in the decoration of these "Mass", with an unparalleled type of decoration.
Private architecture often takes its inspiration from rustic elements. The fronts are brightened by many openings and the silhouettes of the roofs together give a not unpleasant medieval character.
Sculpture. -- In respect to composition and execution, it seems that German sculpture should not have to wait long to reach the degree of perfection attained by decorative art.
Interior decorative art. -- The inner hall of a house should have a welcoming atmosphere, and that's what emerges from these high panels of bright wood harmonized with the clock, the table and the chairs.
In crystalworks you can also feel the concern for renovation that tourments modern German art.
Interior decorative art. -- The first-rate lighting of a dining room is assured by these large English-style windows that the artists of Munich seem to treat in such an interesting manner.
Picturesque Munich -- The river that waters the city, the Isar, makes a number of sidetracks, at times going by the lawns of public gardens, at times between the household laundries.
Picturesque Munich. -- Rarer every year, some village-like aspects of the city are hidden in Munich, which looks as much a city in nature as a city of art.

Wooden toys are remarkable for the originality by which they are made. This one is not simply made simply by trimming wood. They have scrupulously added details, respecting the realism of forms and movements.
Fabric toys. -- This procession goes beyond its comedic aspects, with a variety of expression that breaks the routine one usually finds with fabric dolls.
Furniture. -- Very simple and laquered furniture, white paneling, ventilated cabinets, drawers of varied dimensions, particularities that show the quest for hygiene and comfort.
Furniture. -- The bed so massive and the so rigid furniture of this "Madame's bedroom" make you think that Munich has no sense for feminine beauty.
Munich decorative art uses a liberal interpretation for most forms.
Furniture. -- The profusion of inlays in this room and the two small dressers, twins like the beds, let you feel the effort made by Munich modern art to escape from banality.
Furniture -- If you only judge from the "Great Room" German temperament seems to have a difficult time avoiding stiltedness and coldness.
Contrasts in Munich. -- At the foot of modern tall houses are still some old residences with their large roofs, a present that will soon have done away with the past.
Simplicissimus. -- Th. Heine creates political caricatures taken from the thick of current news. Below this picture it says: "War and cholera. Civilization makes its entry into Tripoli."
Porcelain art in Baveria. -- Beer cans painted in colourful Swabian earthenware, dating from the 18th century.
Mosaic art. -- These ancient mosaics decorating a lobby take on a bit of a Pompeian style.
Simplicissimus - E. Thoeny, the author of this comic showing Bavarian students, also does cartoons of officers, peasants, workers, and excells at drawing horses.
Wood carving -- You can see the exactitude here in making the different poses of sheep and the flexibility of their movements.
Fabric dolls make up a more and more prosperous industry.
The industry of hinged toys works to diversify itself, becoming more and more successful every day.
"Brewery Garden" by Liebermann, one of the best artists in Munich, showing moving familial and inland scenes.
"Christ Among the Peasants" is the work of Von Uhde, a talented painter, one of the founders of the Salon du Champ-de-Mars.
Simplicissimus. -- This picture by Guibransson represents the German eagle and the French rooster on the same perch that the English are trying to excite one against the other.
Simplicissimus - Brune Paul specializes in soldiers, peasants and officials.
Theatrical architecture. -- Left: Central part of the municipal theatre of Bremerhaven. Right: Entry to cinematographic theatre of Nollendorfer Square in Berlin.
Left: The decoration of the event hall in the municipal theatre in Bremerhaven. Right: Seats in the Nollendorfer cinematographic theatre.
Simplicissimus. -- William Schultz, poet and cartoonist, illustrates symbolic, political and social images. Below this one: "England and Germany: how do we shake hands?"
Modern theatrical architecture. -- The decoration of the event hall of the cinematographic theatre "Marmorhaus" in Berlin.
Modern theatrical architecture. -- The decoration of the curtains and cinematographic theatre scene at "Marmorhaus" in Berlin.
Portraits make up the most important part of the famous painter von Lenbach. On the left is Prince Bismarck, on the right Count Moltke.
Von Lenbach has made portraits of a number of famous people, but also those of beautiful unknowns like the one on the left and the other one with his daughter Marion.
Simplicissimus -- Here is another composition by Schultz, with the following below: "Before Tripoli: Say, brother, is that the star of Bethlehem?"
Battlements on the Pegnitz. -- The bridge connects the walls of the battlements, and is covered in wood.
The moat of Spittlertor. -- In the distance you can see the castle of Burgraves. From left to right you can see the Pagan Tower, the Round Tower, the Pentagonal Tower, and the Square Tower.
On the Pegnitz. -- The Butcher's Bridge was rebuilt from 1596 to 1598 on the model of the bridge of Rialto in Venice, built 10 years earlier.
The German National Museum is located in the ancient monastery of the Carthusians, a remarkable contruction of ogive style.
The house of Albrecht Dürer. -- Born in Nuremburg in 1471, Dürer did his apprenticeship at the wood printer Wolgemut, and besides a few trips to Venice and the Netherlands he lived there throughout his entire artistic life.
The customs house. -- In this gigantic building 85 metres long and 20 metres wide, built in the 15th century, the customs house was established in the 16th century.
The Bratwurstglöcklein has offered the sale of small sausages and sauerkraut for 500 years.
The Peignitz forms a number of islands in Nuremberg. The most important is the island Schütt, downstream from where it passes by the hospital.
The bourgeois residences of the 16th century have in their centre curious arcades of wood that connect the buildings in front to the rear of the constructions.
A singing competition parade. -- Nuremberg since the 14th century has been a very active centre of the art of singing along with a number of other cities in Germany.
A gathering of singers. -- These singers of today evoke the memory of those master singers that Wagner made famous.
Picturesque Nuremberg. -- The houses with sharp roofs and wooden balconies jostle along tight alleys and unforeseen detours.
The fountains of Nuremberg. -- The beautiful grating that surrounds them witnesses to the skill they work with iron in Nuremberg.
The fountains. -- It's the pleasant imagination of the Renaissance founders that created the smiling little man with geese, the man with the flute and the man with the pipe.
The hotel Deutscher Kaiser shows the architectural ornaments in use in Nuremberg at the end of the 16th century: the rectangular turret of the front facing the street enhanced by columns and arches.
The Chapel of Ottmar or of Walpurgis made up part of the castle of the burgrave. All that is left of the Roman epoch is the tower containing the apse. The chapel itself, destroyed in 1420, was rebuilt soon after.
The beauty of Swiss Saxony includes, besides the sinewy valley of the Elbe, the lateral valleys of its tributaries which are often very steep.
Albrechtsburg in Meissen could be considered as the cradle of the porcelain industry in Saxony. This is where August II set up the inventor Brötiger with his workers and materials.
Hunter's Courtyard in Dresden. -- These roofing trends from the Renaissance era were redone and directly copied by modern art.
Saxon Switzerland, located on the borders of Saxony and Bohemia, is a high plateau teeming with boulders with bizarre forms and savage-looking canyons.
The painting gallery is proud to possess, among other well-known masterpieces, the Virgin or Saint Sixtus by Raphael (right), and the Nativity, previously called "Night", by Correggio.
The painting gallery in Dresden is the most important after those of Paris and Florence, and possesses a number of masterpieces from the greatest known masters.
The Opera in Dresden has one of the best orchestras in the world to which only the orchestras of Berlin, Munich and Leipzig can be compared.
Dresden, the capital of Saxony, is a smiling city, rich in walking places like Brühl on the river Elbe.
The Court of Zwinger is a collection of buildings that August II had built, in order to replace the amphitheatre of wood created for the festivals of 1709.
The Castle, which contains the "Grünes Gewelbe" -- a well-known collection of works of art and curiosities -- was entirely redesigned in the Renaissance style.
The porcelain of Meissen. -- These "Saxons" belong to the golden age of the products of Meissen, those with warm, honest and frank tones that go from 1735 to 1776.
The palace of the great garden has gone through large changes since the 17th century, the epoch when it was built. It was assigned to the Saxon Museum of Antiquity.
The main station in Dresden presents a truly monumental character. This is the case for most of the stations in the large cities in Germany.
The terrace of Brühl is the large meeting place for the Dresden population, where you enjoy a superb view on the Elbe and the hills that surround it.
The tramways of Dresden can, while transporting travelers, be used for the hauling of merchandise or for moving.
The royal castle of Dresden. -- The court of the castle with its walls carpeted with foliage and its Renaissance architectural forms.
Leipzig -- The students of Leipzig are great fans of a special beer called Göse, which is served in large and potbellied bottles with a thin and long neck like the Italian flaschi.
Leipzig. Left: The new Rathaus, in German Renaissance style, with its tower rising to 112 metres. Right: This Russian church was built in memory of Russians that died at the battle of Leipzig.
The fairs in Leipzig are three in number: the first in February or March called the Vormesse, the second is Ostermesse (Easter), the third is Herbstmesse, which takes place in autumn
The Vormesse and Herbstmesse are organized for the sale of ceramics, toys, stationary, items for the household, bazaar, sport, art and fantasy.
The advertisements in the fairs in Leipig take on such an amusing form that when seeing them you could believe yourself to be at some sort of féerie at Châtelet or a procession at Mardi gras.
Entertainment at the fair in Leipzig. -- The "Messplatz" is where the attractions and fairground shops are set up.
The monument of the Battle of the Nations (Battle of Leipzig) measures 91 metres in height. On an enormous substructure rises a cupola of 65 metres where the top part is flanked by twelve warrior figures 12 metres in height.
The Völkerschlachtsdenkmal (monument commemorating the Battle of the Nations) is located on a vast knoll 3 km from Leipzig.
the bas-relief that decorates the front of the monument is 60 metres wide and 25 metres high.
The pillars that support the cupola of the monument are eight in number, and are sculpted in the form of gigantic warriors.
Leipzig. -- Augustusplutz, the largest square in the city, is located between the New Theatre, the Municipal Museum, the University, the Paulinerkirche and the Central Post Office.
Leipzig. -- Over Market square rises the ancient City Hall, from the 16th century, which today contains a municipal museum of history.
The streets of Leipzig during the festivals are beautifully decked out with thousands of placards, signs, posters, and colourful panels that fight amongst themselves for the attention of the clientele.
The fairs of Leipzig. -- A thousand human billboards walk down the Peterstrasse, the Grimmaischestrasse and the neighbouring streets.
The advertising procession walks through Leipzig, showing off their placards and ingenious symbolic mannequins, either gigantic or minuscule.
The main station in Leipzig is only completed on its left side, the Prussian part. The work on the right side which Saxony is paying for is only going at a slow pace, due to lack of sufficient funds.
The fur trade. -- Leipzig for a long time has had a universal reputation for fur commerce, and has 200 companies selling it.
The inauguration of the monument of the Battle of nations took place on 18 October 1913 in the presence of the Kaiser, the king of Saxony and all the confederated princes of Germany. A military million presided by grand duke Cyril represented Russia.

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